Bring Education Programs to Young Readers

by Raising A Reader
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Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Bring Education Programs to Young Readers
Pajaro Valley Family
Pajaro Valley Family

Raising A Reader has been delivering their evidence-based literacy program to rural communities all over the country. In 2005, Pajaro Valley Unified School District (USD) began implementing Raising A Reader in Watsonville, California, a rural community including migrant families with the highest poverty rate in the county.

Raising A Reader in Pajaro Valley has since shaped a path in the migrant community.

A RAR migrant program runs for 6 months, after which families leave to follow available harvesting work. During their stay, parents often work 12 hour days in the strawberry fields from dawn until dusk. Family time is limited and opportunities for engagement with children are minimal. Some of the families speak Mixteco, a dialect that has no written language. Other families have limited English and Spanish vocabulary and many cannot they read or write. Pajaro Valley USD knew that RAR would address the needs of the families and provide the resources for family engagement and early literacy skills for their children.

With your help, Raising A Reader has expanded the program and become a solution to a significant challenge that faces hundreds of families in Pajaro Valley. In 2016, 4,000 children ages 0-5 across 281 sites participated in the RAR program. There are 69 sites serving migrant families including center based migrant programs along with family child care homes.

Every year the staff of Pajaro Valley USD meets with the centers in April before the start of migrant season to provide refresher training for the educators. When the school district RAR staff visit providers, they bring posters and other resources depicting interactive reading as a helpful reminder for parents. Staff also demonstrate how to read without needing to “actually read” allowing parents to create new ways to use books with their children. Families are also encouraged to use the pictures to tell the stories to their children in their native language. The centers also provide monthly workshops where parents are given additional strategies along with facts about early brain development.

For the children in the migrant community Raising A Reader always provides something new. Children get to experience different books on a weekly or biweekly basis. They become captivated by the illustrations and are excited to bring new books home to share with their families. In the fall, local sites host library connection events where families come to celebrate the completion of the program.

Because of your support, Pajaro Valley USD has successfully adapted Raising A Reader within their migrant program opening the door for areas across the state to adapt the program into their own migrant communities. From its beginning, Pajaro Valley USD has expanded every year to reach more children and plans to keep up the momentum for years to come!

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Blue Bag Event in San Jose, CA
Blue Bag Event in San Jose, CA

Here at Raising A Reader the weeks leading up to summer mean one very special thing – it’s time for kids to graduate from the Raising A Reader program!

During this special time of year, thousands of blue bag events are held across the country to commemorate the completion of the Raising A Reader program. At blue bag events, children receive a Raising A Reader blue library bag to take home (and keep!) and use to carry books from the library. Events are held at school or the local library where teachers and librarians provide parents and children with information on their local library, inlcuding how to obtain a library card and more!

Thank YOU for making wonderful events like these possible!

It is because of donors like you that we are able to provide these vital opportunities for children to experience the joy of reading and develop a love of books. Thank you for making it possible for Raising A Reader to reach over 130,000 children across the country.       


While summer is known for fun in the sun, it is also a great time for children to visit their local library to keep the book sharing momemtum going during off-school time. Here are some HOT summer reading tips: 

1) After a visit to the library grab a blanket and read your books outside. 

2) Read a nonfiction book about nature and go out and explore.

3) Create artwork or crafts based on your favorite book.

4) Check your local library for summer reading programs and participate!      

Yours in book sharing, 

The Raising A Reader Team

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Happy child from California.
Happy child from California.

Thank you for warming our hearts this winter with your generosity!  While the winter months can be long and cold, we believe the best way to warm your heart is to curl up with a child to share a story.

Beyond simply creating shared reading habits, Raising A Reader has the ability to transform lives.

How do we transform lives? With your support Raising A Reader will continue to promote family engagement, foster brain development, affect early language and literacy development, and create a lifelong love of reading.

Raising A Reader strengthens the parent-child bond through developing and maintaining the habit of reading together. Our parent education  provides families with the skills and confidence they need to create a literacy rich environment regardless of their first language or personal literacy levels.

The critical years of brain development occur in the earliest years of a child’s life. Raising A Reader fosters healthy brain development through the bonding experience of sharing a book, as well as through active listening and discussing a story.

From the field, here are a few quotes about how these lives are transformed:

“Many of our family coaches report being greeted at their home visits by children who are holding their RAR bag knowing that when their coach visits they get a new bag.   With a large population in our community of families whose first language is not English the books are helping the parents as well.  One mom said that while the books are good for her kids she has used them as a chance to learn new English vocabulary”. –Educator, Calhoun County, MI

"We really enjoyed the program and did so much more reading because of it. Opening the new red bag each week was like opening a present. Thank you!!" –Parent, Yavapai County, AZ

Thank you for your ongoing generosity and all you do to support children and families across the country. We can’t wait to see what the spring has in store!

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King A
King A

Over the last two months, parents have been introduced to Raising A Reader and children will get excited to take home a little red bag full of books each week. With your support, over 1000 children and their families are participating in Raising A Reader this school year.  This includes adding new classrooms and introducing the new STEM and Special Needs books to children and families.

Below is a story about a little boy named J.

J went to from Jump Start University Child Care, a small daycare in one of the most poverty stricken areas in North Carolina.

Fall 2014:

J is reading!! The Raising A Reader Coordinator didn’t believe the teacher at first but she told J to get the “Cat In The Hat” book and read it.  He sat down on the cushion beside the teacher and started reading. The teacher thought he memorized the book. The teacher asked him to pick any book from the book shelf and read.  He then picked up “Hooray for Fish”, by Lucy Cousins. He read it! Then he picked up Dr. Seuss’s “Fox in Socks” (he likes Dr. Seuss books) and started reading.  When asked if Raising A Reader had anything to do with his reading success, the teacher said that it was definitely a major part of the success story because of constant flow of books going into the home. 

Fall 2015:

J entered kindergarten in August 2014.  He was tested along with the other children in his kindergarten class and he is reading at a third grade level. J also was accelerated up to the first grade.  The teachers in the class were amazed at his accomplishments and applauded his teachers and the Raising A Reader program. They were astounded by his vocabulary and comprehension skills which tested very high for a five year old. The parents stated that Raising A Reader was a wonderful program that put quality books into their home every week. They said that the teachers gave techniques on reading with J and ideas on what books to select when they take their son to the library. J’s mom, who is taking college classes, was so thankful for the Raising A Reader program because it gave them books at home when it was extremely hard for her to get out and go to the library.  

Raising A Reader continuously hears stories about families in the program and we love sharing them with you!Your continued support helps Raising A Reader families across the country develop, practice and maintain early learning skills crucial to future success. 

Thank you for changing the lives of children and families in need.

Yours in book sharing,
The Raising A Reader Team

NC group
NC group

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As families head back to school over the next month, parents will be trained on the importance of early literacy and children will get excited to take home a little red bag full of books each week.

With your support, over 1000 children and their families will participate in Raising A Reader this school year! Over the past year, Raising A Reader has built new collections including Exceptional Diversity and STEM, and has continuously seen statistically significant increases in the amount of time spent reading together and the amount of books read between adult and child in parent surveys. 

In New York, Head Start parents are raving about the program:

“The program is great. We read the books and then we discuss the stories together. We also love the fact they are bilingual.”  

“I really like the red bags and the books, we read every afternoon and since having the bags we read more often. We love having a variety of books.”

“I like the program and the books, my son knows his colors and he interprets the story on his own and tells me.”

Your continued support helps Raising A Reader families across the country develop, practice and maintain early learning skills crucial to future success. 

You truly are changing the lives of children and families in need.

Yours in book sharing,
The Raising A Reader Team

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Organization Information

Raising A Reader

Location: Milpitas, CA - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @RARnational
Project Leader:
Noelle Colomé
Milpitas, California United States
$32,854 raised of $50,000 goal
 
469 donations
$17,147 to go
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